Important step to a Plastic-Free Porthmadog
Making Porthmadog plastic-free – this is the aim of brand-new initiative launched in the town this week.
With a number of residents and businesses already making positive strides towards using more sustainable materials, the hope now is that with the support of environmental group, Surfers Against Sewage the town can secure the ‘Plastic-Free’ status.
Councillor Nia Jeffreys who represents Porthmadog (Dwyrain) on Gwynedd Council said: “As a coastal town built on land reclaimed from the sea, the effects of climate change and the damage plastics cause to marine life are very important issues for those of us who live here in Porthmadog.
“I know that a number of individuals and local companies are doing great work in terms of environmental efforts. This is an important first step and it was inspiring to see representatives from local schools, businesses, local volunteers and Surfers Against Sewage come together to see how we can develop Porthmadog into a Plastic-Free Town.”
Gwynedd Council Cabinet Member for Highways and Municipal matters said: “With around five million tonnes of plastic waste generated in the UK every year, we all have a responsibility to consider the products we buy and how we can make changes for the benefit of our environment.
“I’d like to thank everyone who attended the meeting in Porthmadog and hope that this will form the start of what will be an important campaign for the area towards a greener town for everyone.
“Positive work is also being carried out in a number of our communities and I’d urge any other area that wants to work on a similar positive campaign in their area to get in touch with Gwynedd Council.”
Work will now be carried out to consider what steps can be taken to cut down of the use of single-use plastic in the town as well as the introduction of street-recycling bins in Porthmadog. A number of the town’s businesses are already playing their part such as Caffi TH and children’s clothing company, Babi Pur.
Jolene Barton from Babi Pur said she was pleased to event, the Plastic-Free Porthmadog event, she added: “Since establishing in 2007 we have been committed to making sure that everything we sell is ethically sourced and use natural and sustainable materials.
“We sell a wide selection of cloth nappies which can be washed and re-used and we also sell re-usable bottles, cups and food storage which is a great way to reduce your waste and carbon footprint
“We also strive to re-use as much materials as we can - we re-use cardboard boxes as racks in our warehouse and also to package goods for delivery. By taking these small steps together we can help the environment and help spread the message.”
Councillor Selwyn Griffiths, who is the local member for Porthmadog (Gorllewin) on Gwynedd Council added: “Environmental issues are top of the agenda these days and we’re all far more aware of the damage plastic can cause. I was pleased to attend the recent meeting and look forward to see what we can all do together to make a positive change for a green Porthmadog.”
Ysgol Eifionydd Headteacher, Dewi Bowen said that the town’s secondary school is eager to do what it can to support the efforts.
“This is a matter that our pupils are passionate about. As a school we look forward to making a positive contribution of the efforts and will be working hard to reduce the amount of single-use plastic as much as possible,” said Mr Bowen.
One of Ysgol Eifionydd’s pupils is Olivia Folkman also addressed the meeting, and wants to see a real change.
She said: “We need to fight for our planet and act. This is very serious and we need to recycle and reuse plastic bottles, bags, straws and when shopping try to not buy too much plastic.
“We need to help our planet - this is a global emergency and need to act. This is not a crisis or a problem, this is a global emergency.”
1 – Councillor Catrin Wager; Councillor Nia Jeffreys; Berni Cavanagh, Surfers Against Sewage’s Plastic-free Porthmadog Champion; Councillor Selwyn Griffiths; Ysgol Eifionydd pupil, Olivia Folkman and Headteacher Dewi Bowen.
2 – The Plastic-free meeting held in Porthmadog